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Utilimaster Establishes Ford Transit Van Upfit Center in Kansas City to Maximize Cost Savings

INDIANAPOLIS, March 3, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In a move to minimize costs to customers who need a customized Ford Transit Van, specialty vehicle maker Utilimaster Corporation, a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc. (Nasdaq:SPAR), has established upfit operations on a ship-thru basis in Kansas City, Missouri. Utilimaster's upfit center is an example of the company's mission to deliver intelligent vehicle solutions by moving towards a holistic vehicle/solutions provider approach.

Advantages of the new upfit center and the value it adds to fleets include: one point of release and a one-time freight expense from utilizing the Ford Ship-Thru delivery system. Operations have commenced with vans being upfitted for clients like DHL and Federal Express.

"The Utilimaster Kansas City upfit location reflects our focus on helping fleet managers reduce the total cost of ownership by maximizing convenience and providing customized vocational packages for their fleet operations," said John Marshall, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Utilimaster.

Common vocational packages are stocked in Kansas City for quick delivery. Ford dealers can order the FedEx Ground and Home Delivery vocational packages that have been proven for more than a decade. To facilitate equipment orders and delivery, Utilimaster has created a Ford Transit upfit hotline – (574) 848-2111.

The upfit center operates in a 146,000-square-foot facility.

"By offering such upfit services, Utilimaster's customers can place the van directly into route operation without the additional time and freight cost of upfitting the van after it has been delivered to their Ford dealership," stated Dave Stace, Upfit Operations Manager for Utilimaster. "Our vocational packages were first installed more than a year ago with various fleet pilot vehicles and the packages are also available as parts kits for field installations."

The Utilimaster Kansas City upfit center aligns with Spartan's D.R.I.V.E. initiative, as it enables the company for diversified growth. The center will enable Utilimaster to sustain over the long term and be protected against cyclical markets. Additionally, it reaffirms Utilimaster's strength within the walk-in van industry.

D.R.I.V.E. is Spartan's operating strategy based on five tenets:

  • Diversified Growth
  • Redefining Technology and Innovation
  • Integrated Operational Excellence
  • Vibrant Culture
  • Excited Consumers/Brand Loyalists

For more information on Utilimaster, visit www.utilimaster.com or call 800-582-3454.

About Utilimaster

Utilimaster, a subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc. (Nasdaq:SPAR), is a leading manufacturer of walk-in vans and commercial truck bodies for the delivery and service marketplace. Utilimaster designs, develops and manufactures products to customer specifications for use in the package delivery, one-way truck rental, bakery/snack delivery, utility and linen/uniform rental businesses. The company serves a diverse customer base and also sells aftermarket parts and accessories. Visit Utilimaster at www.utilimaster.com.

About Spartan Motors

Spartan Motors, Inc. designs, engineers and manufactures specialty chassis, specialty vehicles, truck bodies and aftermarket parts for the recreational vehicle (RV), emergency response, government services, defense, and delivery and service markets. The Company's brand names – Spartan™, Spartan Chassis™, Spartan ER™, Spartan ERV™ and Utilimaster® – are known for quality, performance, service and first-to-market innovation. The Company employs approximately 1,700 associates at facilities in Michigan, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Indiana and Florida. Spartan reported sales of $507 million in 2014 and is focused on becoming a global leader in the design, engineering and manufacture of specialty vehicles and chassis. Visit Spartan Motors at www.spartanmotors.com.

CONTACT: John Marshall Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing Utilimaster Corporation (574) 848-2004 Greg Salchow Director, Investor Relations Spartan Motors, Inc. (517) 543-6400Source:Spartan Motors, Inc.